It's puppy love for the record books: The Labrador retriever was the most popular dog breed in the US last year for a 23rd year in a row.
That's the longest any breed has been top dog since the the American Kennel Club was founded in 1884.
German shepherds, golden retrievers, beagles and bulldogs are holding steady in the top-five pack, with Yorkshire terriers, boxers, poodles, Rottweilers and dachshunds continuing to round out the leading 10, which mirrors last year. But the comical French bulldog is newly on their heels after a decade-long popularity spurt.
Surpassing the poodle's 22-year reign some decades ago, the Labrador has proliferated as a congenial, highly trainable dog that was developed to fetch game but has taken other roles in stride.
"It does so many different things really well - it excels as a family companion, it's an awesome hunting dog, and it also has a great presence as a service and law-enforcement search-and-rescue dog," AKC spokeswoman Lisa Peterson said.
The rankings reflect newly registered dogs, mostly puppies. The AKC doesn't release exact numbers but estimates its registry has included more than 40 million purebred dogs over its history.